Howard Lipstone, a longtime TV executive whose company produced In Search Of…, Gimme A Break and several socially conscious telefilms and miniseries in the 1970s and ’80s, has died. He was 87. Lipstone died Monday at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Westwood of complications from a recent stroke.
Lipstone’s son Greg was named CEO of All3Media America this month and was a founding partner and former board member at ICM Partners, and his son Lewis is founder and owner of postproduction facility Westside Media Group, and his
A Chicago native, Howard Lipstone began his nearly half-century career in Los Angeles local news then segued to Head of Production at Ivan Tors Studios. In 1970, he and his business partner Alan Landsburg founded Alan Landsburg Productions. As President and Executive in Charge of Production of the company, Lipstone guided such programs as Bill (1981), for which Mickey Rooney won an Emmy for his role as a mentally challenged man who ventures out on his own after spending most of his life institutionalized; Adam (1983), the story of Adam Walsh, whose kidnapping and murder led to the creation of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; and The Ryan White Story (1981), about the teenager who was kicked out of middle school because he had AIDS.
Alan Landsburg Productions also was behind less serious programs including That’s Incredible! and Those Amazing Animals, early-’80s forebears of the reality TV revolution; In Search Of …, the Leonard Nimoy-hosted 1977-82 series that focused on the paranormal and unexplained; and the popular ’80s sitcoms Gimme A Break! and Kate & Allie.
Lipstone and Landsburg’s production outfit rebranded as the Landsburg Company in 1985, with Lipstone continuing as President and adding COO duties. The company continued to make telefilms and specials into the 2000s.
Lipstone’s survivors include his brother Ronald Lipstone; son Lewis, founder and owner of postproduction facility Westside Media Group; and son Greg, CEO of All3Media who also was a founding partner and former board member at ICM Partners. Lipstone’s father Louis Lipstone headed the music department at Paramount Studios for more than 20 years.
A funeral service is set for 1 PM August 27 at Hillside Memorial Park and Mortuary in Los Angeles.